Coach Dean

2 mile record-1
Hi I’m Dean Hebert. Everyone calls me Coach Dean. I’m a mental game coach, author and speaker. I work with individual athletes, parents, coaches, and teams on sports performance enhancement. Beyond my academic post-graduate work in sports psychology – the psychology behind athlete performance – I am a certified Mental Games Coaching Professional (MGCP) and certified hypnotherapist.

I have been cited in Runners World, Best Health magazine (CN), SWEAT Magazine, and the Washington Examiner among many other publications. I have been a featured mental games coach in Runner’s World and for the internationally acclaimed trail running resource – and I also regularly appear on sports and fitness talk shows such as LTKFitness, Runnersroundtable and for more than three years I co-hosted a weekly video series with Coach Joe English for

I specialize in mental toughness training. A large focus of my practice is working with parents and youth athletes. My clients include tennis, synchronized swimming, golf, race-kart, soccer, motocross, volleyball, MMA, cycling (road, off-road, time-trialist), running, duathlon and triathlon, basketball, football and baseball athletes. I have coached world-class athletes and athletes internationally. I have a passion for working with youth athletes and helping them apply mental game skills and techniques to all areas of life.

Most importantly, my aim is to have people enjoy sports and life to their fullest through peak performances.

You don’t have to listen to me, read what my clients have to say in their own words!

Join my member-only mental game learning community.

6 Responses to Coach Dean

  1. Dusty Ashby says:

    I’m 32 years old and a distance runner (50+ miles per week) I have an 8 year old son interested in racing with me. I am going to let him race in local 5k races but am concerned on training him. I don’t know how to train a runner at that age and do not want to damage anything for him (physical or mental). What help/advise can you give me?

    • Dean Hebert says:

      You’re doing the right thing that is – asking before doing. Children cannot be trained in the same manner as adults. They may be resilient but you’re right, their bodies are not prepared for the pounding of adult oriented training. So, first, as with any new runner – ANY running will give results. So he needs to get out and run and that includes soccer, basketball, etc. Second, forget “long” runs. Third, it should be fun for HIM. This is not about you. Too many parents try to hard to get their kids involved in the adult’s chosen sport. This has to be something he wants to do and is willing to do whether you are around or not. Finally – as far as training programs; I can certainly design one and do so for youth my advice is forget such structure. Run when he feels like it. And stick to quality over quantity. Doing repeats of different distances on a track can be more entertaining while teaching them pacing and giving them quantifiable numbers to pursue (goal focused). I would not have him running no more than 2-3 times a week (4 max!!!!) and no more than 10 miles a week for quite some time before even considering moving it up because he will find great improvement at that level with quality running.

  2. Adrian says:

    Hi Dean,

    I’ve been having a look around your site and I thought I should get in touch with you to see if you might be interested in working with us over at Tribesports in a blog / content partnership. We work with a lot of coaches in different fields ranging from endurance and Ultramarathon training to Strength training and I thought it would be great if you would join us on site and potentially work with us on some sports psychology and mental preparation / strength content and Challenges.

    It would be great to hear from you, please do get in touch:


  3. Meg says:

    Hi Coach Dean,
    I am currently suffering from Lyme disease… Having been diagnosed one week before a marathon I was hoping to qualify for Boston in. I missed it by 9 minutes… Anyway I wanted to thank you for sharing your experience. I have had some dark days due to not running and being in so much pain. I never realized how much I loved my running and needed it to keep balance in my life. But hearing that you came back and are able to train, really train, is giving me so much hope. Thank you!

  4. Jeff McMahon says:

    Hello Dean,
    I just finished reading up on the article “How much Running is Too Much for High School Runners?” posted on your page in April of 2010. I also read the comments and responses and got some very good information. I do have some specific questions if you could help answer. I coach High School cross country and I have 2 female athletes who will be seniors this upcoming year. I have always worked on improving them the best that I can but I get stuck wondering how many miles they should be doing. Currently they average low 19’s for their 5K and breaking into 18’s only a few times. How many miles should someone of their talent be running per week during the summer? They also have a sister who will be a freshman and she will be running in the 20’s. How many miles should she be getting? Once I know how much they get, I can work out my other athletes. Thank you and I hope to hear back from you soon!

    • Dean Hebert says:

      Hey Jeff,
      Here’s my advice. But please note that it is highly individual).
      A senior in high school who can run 18-19s should be able to handle 35-40 mile weeks. But this is only if they have progressed over their years to do this. The other caveat is that some runners just simply thrive and perform better on less miles and higher quality. I had a 19:00 girl who fell apart, and performances dramatically fell off when she went from 30ish miles per week to 40-45. It just beat her up too much.

      In context, to go from 19s to sub-19 the biggest difference is in increasing that “new” race pace goal pace into training. They can’t train at their old paces and expect to improve.

      Hope that helps.

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